Jamil’s, But Don’t Hold It Against Him

April 18, 2008 at 2:27 am (Uncategorized)

Yesterday was unpleasant. I’ve been dragging out the whole process with a very versatile, verging on acrobatic display of procrastination tactics, but in the end there was no getting out of it, so I had to just force myself to get the damn thing over and done with. Tax. Make it go away.

One of the few downsides of being a sole trader (aside from patchy income, chasing unpaid invoices, no super annuation, illness or leave entitlements and boring adult things like that) is having to be really quite well across tax deductions and receipt hoarding. It is so deathly dull I can barely stand talking about it, so let’s stop. I’ll just say PHEW, at least that’s 06/07 out of the way.

I was so disconsolate after my day with the calculator that I first of all binged on about a kilo of salted cashew nuts (belch) and thus developed a desert thirst that good intentions were simply no match for. I urgently needed a drinking buddy, and my husband kindly volunteered. Bless that team spirit. He got a head start, knocking the top off a beer on the way home. I waited, staring at the wine rack with a drooling, wolfish hunger. We met up at the wharf and wandered around to the surfside to what has to be one of the best spaces in Sydney: Jamil’s. I know. Dumb name. But there is actually a Jamil, and it’s hardly his fault. I kind of wish he hadn’t named his restaurant after himself (he’s also the owner of the much better named and equally fabulous Bower restaurant) because it doesn’t at all serve to entice one in the door, but take my word for it: it is beautiful in there.

Jamil’s is in the old Will and Toby’s site, pretty much unchanged except if anything it’s somehow even more atmospheric than it was before. And Jamil opens those unbelievable and enormous windows all the way across, so the effect is of totally collapsing the distance between outside and in. The Norfolk pines and the inky breaking waves feel close enough to touch. It is so superb. Also the Tunisian-inspired food is much, much better than Will and Toby’s always pretty ordinary fare. We had scallops six ways, duck spring rolls and chilli prawns, and it was all delicious, although some of the scallops were overcooked and all of the sauces a little too busy for my personal preference. I like scallops to be uncluttered. But the duck was great, as were the prawns. We also had fantastic service from our informed and amiable barman all night. It was very easy to stay, but very hard dragging ourselves out the door at the end of the night. Very hard, although perhaps that had something to do with the 7 litres of alcohol coursing through our veins. Regardless, it’s a lovely restaurant, but as a night-time space it’s quite simply got to be the best bar in Manly. I think it’s absolutely brilliant, and my word we’ll be making a habit of going back. Tax return? What tax return?

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